Dutchman Jarno Smeets, who achieved Internet stardom after he posted to YouTube a video of himself allegedly flying like a bird, flapping artificial wings device, has finally publicly admitted that he faked the video
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Digital Journal reported that soon after Smeets' video went viral, engineering and CGI experts criticized the footage. Experts agreed that the the physics of his invention "did not add up." Others listed evidence that video was fake. Marketing experts said the video was probably a viral ad campaign for the products Smeets mentioned he used in making the wing contraption.
Digital Journal also reports skepticism about Smeets grew when it was shown that Pailton Engineering Limited which he claimed he had worked with said it has no record of him and neither did Coventry University from which he claimed he graduated.
Smeets, according to Live Science, has publicly confessed to a Dutch television that the video and the blog documentation of his fictitious project were what he termed "online storytelling."
Live Science reports Jarno Smeets, whose real name is Floris Kaayk, said: "I’m actually a filmmaker and animator. I am now eight months working on an experiment about online media."
Kaayk also denied speculations that the video was a commercially-sponsored viral ad.
BBC reports Kaayk had claimed his "invention" was inspired by sketches of a "flying bicycle" his grandfather had designed and which his mother had found in the attic of his home. The "online storyteller" had also claimed in a press release that accompanied the video: "Ever since I was a little boy I have been inspired by pioneers like Otto Lilienthal, Leonardo da Vinci."
BBC reports Kaayk owns a website that describes him as specialising in "blending computer generated images with live action."
A previous YouTube video produced by Kaayk is shown below: